Magazine July 20, 2009, Issue

An Occurrence on Fuyou Street

Followers of Falun Gong, the spiritual movement banned in mainland China take part in a rally in Hong Kong, April 25, 2009. (Tyrone Siu/Reuters )
The Communist myth of Falun Gong's original sin

Ten years ago, on April 25, 1999, while attending a Beijing wedding, I heard a rumor that a large crowd of people had gathered at Zhongnanhai, the Chinese government’s compound. I phoned an acquaintance at the South China Morning Post. “Who are they?” I asked. “We think they are called ‘Falun Gong,’” he said. “Apparently it’s a huge Chinese religious movement, but we don’t really know anything about them.” Nobody knew much about them, but the scale of the event was shocking: 10,000 Chinese standing silently in the first mass demonstration since Tiananmen. Equally shocking was the party’s ferocious crackdown,

To Read the Full Story
Ethan Gutmann — Mr. Gutmann, an adjunct fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, is the author of Losing the New China: A Story of American Commerce, Desire, and Betrayal. He wishes to thank the Earhart Foundation and the Peder Wallenberg family for research support.

In This Issue



Books, Arts & Manners




I read William Voegeli’s review of Soft Despotism, Democracy’s Drift with pleasure and genuine interest.


When you deserted your military post, you fled from India as a refugee, then sailed — where else?


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